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Letter: Letter from North Hempstead Housing Authority

The North Hempstead Housing Authority would like to clear up some inaccuracies contained in a recent column by Michael Miller regarding Harbor View Apartments and also provide some additional information on the subject.

By way of background, the NHHA was created more than 60 years ago with a mission to develop and preserve affordable housing in the Town of North Hempstead. The Town of North Hempstead is in dire need of affordable housing. We are working on this project in support of our older residents, who are on fixed incomes and desire to continue to live in the community in which they have always been a part.

The NHHA has no plans to close Manhasset Valley on East Shore Road. This property is unrelated to the development of Harbor View. Also, there is no plan to systemically relocate residents from one property to another.

With regard to the location of the proposed senior community, Harbor View, the NHHA has limited options for building affordable housing in the Town of North Hempstead. Land costs are very high and it would be grossly irresponsible, and given the NHHA’s current budget, impossible, for the NHHA to purchase alternate land when this property is currently available.

In 1950, NHHA acquired from private individuals land at Harbor Homes, where the proposed senior property is to be built, for the sole purpose of creating affordable housing. In 2004, the NHHA privatized Harbor Homes, which was dilapidated and in dire need of rehabilitation. State legislation was specifically enacted to permit the privatization and redevelopment of the Authority’s State-assisted public housing projects. The Harbor Homes project was rehabilitated, and the NHHA transferred title of the property to a limited partnership, of which a housing development fund company (“HDFC”), Harbor Homes Housing Development Fund Corp., became the sole general partner. As required by this legislation, the board members of the HDFC are the Commissioners of the NHHA.

For the protection of the community, over a year ago, NHHA closed the one and a half acre site that is the matter of dispute to curb the underage drinking and other activities that were occurring there, much of which was documented by our management company as well as the local police, who were often called to the site. Currently the acre and half of land is in a state of disrepair.

Misconceptions aside, here is what Harbor View Apartments actually is: a 55 and older, independent living facility consisting of 48 one bedroom apartments with rents at approximately $800 to $1,100 per month, depending upon income levels of the prospective residents.

Prospective residents must meet income criteria and must pass a credit and background check. Specific information regarding eligibility or any other questions or concerns you may have can be obtained by contacting the North Hempstead Housing Authority at (516) 627-6433.

Sean T. Rainey

Executive Director

North Hempstead Housing Authority